Equity and Excellence in Maine Schools (EEMS) is an outreach initiative of the University of Southern Maine (USM) School of Education and Human Development (SEHD). The mission of Equity and Excellence in Maine Schools is to promote awareness of equity issues and provide resources and supports to help ensure excellence in education for all children in Maine Schools.
EEMS provides a Maine based clearinghouse of resources related to equity in K-12 schools; professional development to support culturally responsive practices for teachers, administrators, and staff; equity audits related to student achievement, program funding, student access to programming, and teacher quality; and consultation with schools and districts related to the implementation of best practices.
Maine schools have a tradition of high quality education based on strong student teacher relationships and community support. This project continues in that tradition with new tools and strategies to help teachers and administrators respond to changing demographics.
Making Change Through Empowering Collaboration
Variety of Tools to Respond to Teachers, Administrators and Community Requests
Student Voice- Panels, videos, students from local diverse communities speak about their experiences in school and what they would like to see from schools, teachers and programs to help them be academically succussful.
Professional Learning Team Support- Consulting provided in response to teachers' identified concerns. May include expert participation, reading and online resources, critical friends group protocol (CFG) to examine classroom practices and student work profiles. Topics may include: culturally responsive teaching; responding to students in poverty; teaching English Language Learners; responses to crisis and grief in students' lives.
Culturally Responsive Classroom Management and Discipline - Building on the examination of needs assessment related to discipline, strategic school and district wide programming consultation aligned with Restorative Justice and Positive Behaviot Interventions and Supports (PBIS).
Needs Assesment Through Equity Audits
This program is about strategicly using existing data sources and asking questions of the data aimed at identifying opportunity gaps that lead to achievement gaps.
Achievement - Examination of academic achievement on accountability exams; attendance rates; disciplinary refferals , detentions, and suspensions.
Programing -Academic and co-curricular participation rates; funding; access with timing, transportation and communication.
Culture and Climate - Surveys of attitudes and dispositions selected from current data and validated tools (MYDAS survey, Milville-Guzman Universality Diversity Scale, Teaching Diverse Students Initiative Common Beliefs Survey).